MOSCOW Aug 15 Stock index compiler FTSE has
launched four new indexes that exclude Russia, FTSE said in an
announcement sent to investors on Thursday.
The move follows western sanctions against several Russian
companies over the Ukraine crisis, which had already led another
index compiler, MSCI, to produce new indexes that exclude
Russia, in response to investor demand.
The FTSE statement said that it the four new indexes would
be: the FTSE Emerging ex Russia Index, the FTSE All-World ex US
and Russia Index, the FTSE All-World ex Russia Index and the
FTSE All-World ex Canada and Russia Index, from Aug. 14.
A spokesman for the London Stock Exchange, the parent
company of FTSE, confirmed the move but emphasised that there
had been no changes to the FTSE Emerging Index and FTSE
All-World Index themselves, which are benchmarks for large
numbers of investors.
Possible moves by index compilers to exclude Russian
companies from major indexes have caused jitters among investors
in Russian stocks, as many funds use the composition of these
indexes to determine their portfolio weightings.
Russia's stock market rallied strongly on Monday after MSCI
said that it had decided to keep Russia's two largest banks,
Sberbank and VTB, in its MSCI Russia index
following consultations with investors.
Analysts at Russia's VTB Capital said in a note that the
launch of the new FTSE indexes was unlikely to be consequential
for the Russian stock market unless U.S. fund manager Vanguard,
the major investment company that follows FTSE's indexes,
decided to switch to the ex-Russia versions.
"Unlike the MSCI, which is widely followed by a fragmented
set of passive and active investors, the FTSE is used by a
sharply smaller amount of investors, most notably by Vanguard
ETFs (exchange traded funds) where we see c. $5 billion invested
into Russia," VTB Capital analysts said.
(Reporting by Zlata Garasyuta and Jason Bush; Editing by Robin